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Bonkers Blog September 2014

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22 September - Sidcup. Nearly done or done for?

CommentLast Monday the News Shopper reported that work on the Sidcup regeneration scheme had finally been completed. The report has since been corrected but not before readers had commented that Bexley council was lying again. I suspect it was the newspaper who had jumped the gun but the number of ‘likes’ given to the comment shows exactly what the public tends to think about Bexley council.

It’s five weeks since I last went to Sidcup and there was no opportunity to do so until today. As I was sure would be the case, work is still ongoing and the extensive traffic diversions are still in place. However the scheme is certainly in its final phase.

Sidcup Sidcup Sidcup Sidcup

These photos were taken at 1:25 today in the middle of a sunny lunchtime. I wouldn’t say it was busy but I did have to wait around 30 seconds for a reasonably clear view for Photo 1.

I’m still not sure how the year of disruption is supposed to help Sidcup thrive. Two junctions have been given the ‘kerb less’ treatment and the ends of Hatherley and Hadlow Roads are now going to be used for occasional events with the consequent disruption to traffic and trade. Some of the shop fronts now look very smart and are a credit to their designers, but apart from that; what?

The footpaths have all been replaced but they are merely cleaner versions of the perfectly good ones that were there before, (click for Before and After photo) and there are a few trees and granite slabs for benches. There are no significant parking improvements and the London taxpayer is £1·8 million worse off.

Sidcup looks better than it did but for that amount of money and nine months of chaos I cannot see anything to celebrate apart from the fact that the job is just about done and that I probably won’t have to go there any more.

 

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